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Chief Shelter Warden and Chief Education Officer, Laurie King. (FP)??

Shelter managers and wardens are being urged to be prepared for hurricanes and other disasters.

This advice has come from the Chief Shelter Warden and Chief Education Officer, Laurie King, who was speaking during the opening of the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation’s Shelters and Shelter Management Workshop, this morning, at the Accra Beach Hotel and Spa.

Mr. King asked the trainees to be attentive during the workshop, stating that they were essential to the National disaster management process of the island.??

"You are a critical cog in the wheel of the Department of Emergency Management’s?? structure … The success of our efforts will depend on the efforts and the commitment of every individual involved in the planning and the implementation process.

"You will get information that will help you to be prepared, and that will help you to manage your shelters efficiently and effectively… If there is a major disaster it doesn’t take long before you find yourself back in the Stone age because of the absence of electricity and the absence of water … all of these things are possible," he said.??

Disaster Risk Management Specialist from the United States Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, Clive Lorde, said the workshop would focus on problem-solving during a disaster; the psychological impact of disasters on the individual; the demand and criteria of shelters; and the techniques shelter wardens should use to ensure people remain calm during a disaster, among others.

Mr. Lorde added that a number of simulation exercises will also be conducted during the workshop to highlight various scenarios and possible situations which may and do occur during disasters.??

The list of hurricane shelters which comprises schools, public and private buildings is expected to be made public by next week.

aisha.reid@barbados.gov.bb

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